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UNC vs. NC State - Player of the Game: Antoine Green

The senior came back in a big way to give the Tar Heels hope.

NCAA Football: North Carolina State at North Carolina Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

I gotta say, it was really tough to figure out who to give this award to, as it usually is in a loss. The mistakes stick out to you, and it becomes really tough to find good in anything.

That said, give credit to Antoine Green. He’s had a short season between various injuries, and unlike others who know they have a “super senior” season to come back for, Green is playing super senior season now, hoping to be able to make an impression for NFL scouts. Last night was his last game in Kenan Stadium, and he almost gave fans a great walk off to remember him by.

After an agonizing wait when John Copenhaver had seemingly made the game saving touchdown on third down-only to have it overturned, the Tar Heels lined up and ran a great play that saw Green streak over the middle, and all Drake Maye had to do was put it in the right spot.

Green finished the night with eight catches, 67 yards and that one remarkable touchdown. His numbers could have been higher, as he had an amazing catch that was just out of bounds earlier in the game. It’s clear his ability to stretch the field and put stress on an opposing defense was missed last week, it’s just a shame that he wasn’t to get the ball more.

Let’s also tip our hat to the leader of the defense at this point, Cedric Gray. He led the defense with eight total tackles and an astounding seven solo. The defense really did their job on Friday night, and considering they were missing Tony Grimes from the start, Cam Kelly early on, and Storm Duck after the first half, that’s even more remarkable.

Consider this, the defense gave up three touchdowns in a double overtime game, two of which were in the first half, the other coming on a very short field when a Drake Maye pass was tipped and picked off. The offense had their chances, and even in overtime, on a short field, managed to keep NC State to just field goal attempts. The unit should hang their head high, as they have given two straight performances that were more than good enough to win a game. The offense just didn’t do their job.

Antoine Green did his best, at least. Being in the stands for that fourth down catch was electrifying, and for a short time it looked like the Tar Heels were going to put a great notch in the rivalry. Here’s hoping he has two more great games like that in him, and they are rewarded with a victory.